Yellen nods to cold weather, says unclear impact on economy

Thu Feb 27, 2014 10:33am EST

Feb 27 (Reuters) - Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen said on Thursday recent cold weather and storms may have weakened U.S. spending and, while the central bank will monitor it closely, it is yet difficult to know to what extent the U.S. economic recovery will be weaker than expected.

"Since my appearance before the House committee, a number of data releases have pointed to softer spending than many analysts have expected," Yellen told a Senate Banking Committee hearing, referring to a Feb. 11 testimony.

"Part of that softness may reflect adverse weather conditions, but at this point it's difficult to discern exactly how much," she added. "In the weeks and months ahead, my colleagues and I will be attentive to signals that indicate whether the recovery is progressing in line with our earlier expectations."